China property

Colour Life Services spearheads smart community development in Singapore

Singapore embraces internet technologies on the community level

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 31 May, 2016, 1:18am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 01 June, 2016, 3:16pm

Colour Life Services Group, China’s largest property management firm by residential floor space, is working with the Singapore government to help bring more internet technologies to residential communities in the Lion city.

“Being a part of Singapore’s Smart Nation initiative, we are helping the Singapore government to build a smart community service platform,” Chairman Pan Jun said.

Colour Life Services have set up a joint venture with a wholly owned subsidiary of Temasek Holdings and the model of the first such O2O system will be released in July, according to Pan.

“In terms of ‘smart community’, China’s technology and service is ahead of Singapore,” Pan said. He added that Singapore’s government is taking a proactive role in developing the property management sector.

If current trials are successful, Pan said they would take the service to Hong Kong.

Colour Life took over Singapore’s Steadlink Asset Management, a property management company providing services to about 50 local communities, in 2014.

A spin-off of Shenzhen-based property developer Fantasia Holdings, Colour Life listed on the Hong Kong bourse in 2014, becoming the first mainland property management company with a presence on the main share-trading board.

The company has developed its own ecosystem combining resources that including website, mobile-app and shops, in a bid to meet various kinds of client needs, from maintenance, payment settlement, online shopping, and wealth management. It provided services to a total of more than 322 million square meters of residential space by the end of last year.

The property manager is now turning its attention to Singapore as a first step in a global expansion.

“We hope overseas services will become our new growth engine after five years,” he said.

Colour Life saw its net profit rise 16 per cent to 168 million yuan (HK$198 million) in 2015 from a year earlier. The company is managing nearly 2,000 communities across mainland China, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Tony Li, an analyst at China Galaxy International Securities, said whether Colour Life can succeed overseas depends on the degree of its localisation.

The reason Colour Life has been recognised on the mainland is because its synergy with local business partners and its understanding of clients based on analysis of big data, he said.

“This experience is hard to bring overseas,” he said.

Pan said Colour Life has hired a local team, instead of sending staff from China, to develop the Singapore market, and will use the Singaporean team in its efforts to expand to other Southeast Asian countries.

The company acquired Century Property Management in Hong Kong last year, giving a foothold in the Hong Kong market.

Pan said more time is needed to sell the idea of smart communities in Hong Kong.

“Not many property managers are interested in improving services through an intelligent platform, this is very different from Singapore,” Pan said.

This story has been amended to correct a misspelling in third paragraph in reference to Temasek Holdings.